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Soybean Focus: Soil Sampling to Make Fertilizer Recommendations
February 2015

By Dave Mengel, Ph.D.
Professor of Agronomy
Kansas State University
Phone: 785-532-2166


Executive Summary
(4 min 50 sec)

Full Presentation
(45 min 23 sec)


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for iPhone


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Summary: Soil fertility plays an important role in soybean production in the US. Ensuring adequate levels of phosphorus and potassium, either from the soil or fertilizer, and maintaining an appropriate pH to ensure good nodulation and N supply are critical for high yields. Soil testing is a key point in managing soil pH and nutrient supply.

This presentation will address a series of points one should consider in soil sampling, and interpreting the data which comes from the testing lab. This includes: Where to take samples in a field, how many cores are needed to make a good composite sample, what depth the sample and why that is important, when to take a sample (it really can make a difference), handling samples to maintain good quality, and finally what the numbers coming from a lab really mean.

Hopefully, this presentation will help soybean growers enhance their yields, but also more efficiently utilize lime and fertilizer to enhance profits.

Responsibility: United Soybean Board (USB) farmer-leaders develop and maintain partnerships with U.S. land grant universities and U.S. ag-focused research organizations such as the Plant Management Network to increase the transfer of checkoff-funded applied and practical production research information to U.S. soybean farmers. USB neither recommends nor discourages the implementation of any advice contained herein, and is not liable for the use or misuse of the information provided.

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